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Special Tours offered exclusively at Castello di Sinio

Cultural Points of interest beyond Wine & Food

Our Favorite Partners offering something Truly Special

TRUFFLE HUNT & AUTHENTIC ARTISAN FOOD TOURS - Giuseppe Destefanis is our top recommendation for a true and upclose view of the deep traditions and mystery of a White Alba Truffle Hunt. He comes from a long line and long tradition of Truffle Hunters and he invites you into this world. His gastronomic excursions allow you a peak through the door to local food artisans are also highly recommended. Giuseppe, with his beloved truffle dog offer an ACTUAL hunt, taking you through forests where the precious white alba truffle, as well as black truffles, are hidden treasures. You are accommpanied by Giuseppe's partner Giacomo, who explains how Trifalu (hunter) and dog are working together as one during the search, which lasts for about an hour in the forest. Afterwards you are invited back to Giuseppe's home for a glass of local red wine & salumi and a chat around the fire. In all you spend about two hours.

The thing that sets Giuseppe's truffle hunt apart is that it IS in fact, a REAL hunt, not a phony mock-up truffle planted before and then hope the dog cooperates "hunt". Giuseppe takes you into the world of the guarded, msyterious Trifalu and literally into the forest where you'll walk along with him in pursuit of the revered white truffle.

It is sometimes also possible, to prepare and share a traditional Trifalau dinner with Giuseppe in his home. If you are interested in adding dinner to your experience with Giuseppe, you must request this when you contact him. He speaks great english and gets our most enthusiastic recommendation!! Contact Giuseppe at or phone him at 39 339 774-4832
1 - 3 people €100 per group, 4 - 6 people € 160 not including dinner.

TAKE A GUIDED TASTING TOUR - Silvia Aparto offers wonderful guided tours that combine Wine, Cheese & Chocolate tastings OR she can also organize ALL WINE tours which takes all the hassle out of booking winery visits and finding the wineries.
So, If you prefer to let someone else do all the organizing, reserving and even driving, we suggest TASTING TOURS with our partner Silvia Aprato. Silvia is a native of the area and for a very reasonable price, will make all the arrangements, pick you up, drive you, be your guide extraordinaire & drop you back off. Silvia is a licensed guide & is very knowledgeable about the area's history, wine & producers. She is also an extremely warm & friendly person and we know you'll love her. We couldn't recommend her and her tours more highly!

TASTING TOURS - 1/2 or full day All Wine or Wine, Cheese & Chocolate or Alternatively you can call Silvia at +39 393 635-3479 on her cell phone. Office - +39 0141 948-467 and Fax +39 0141 184-0116. Be sure to tell Silvia you are a guest at Hotel Castello di Sinio.

Sightseeing in Piedmont

Beyond Wine & Food, there are literally hundreds of important sights, historical monuments, beautiful churches and works of art to keep you busy for weeks! While our area is home to some of the most important and famous winemakers in the world, the region of Piedmont is also home to Roman & Medieval antiquities on a par with Tuscany.

We've organized some of our favorites in to conveniently "packaged" half day or full day trips that are wonderful interludes to days spent wine tasting here in the Barolo & Barbaresco wine country. You can disperse these trips throughout your stay to effectively make the most of your vacation. You will find our suggestions below and detailed driving instructions & information are available for you during your stay with us. These sights, that span an amazing diversity in geography, along with the continous village festivals honoring everything from Saints to Strawberries,together with our important wine country, make up a still un-discovered region worthy of a world class Italian vacation.

Centrally Located
Hotel Castello di Sinio is ideally situated: central to all the major sites and in the heart of the Barolo DOC vineyards. Alba is 10 minutes away, Asti a half an hour, Torino is 45 minutes. There is much, much more to the region however and the following are some suggestions for day trips or perhaps half day trips when combined with a nearby wine tasting in Barolo, Castiglione Falletto, Serralunga, Monforte D'Alba or La Morra:

Day or Half Day Trip Suggestions - Maps & Driving Directions at Hotel Castello di Sinio.

Sacra San Michele & San Antonio Ranverso + Val Susa
- if there is only one place you go, this is it! For evocative, mystical, Crusades period architecture & frescos, both excellently preserved.

Fenestrelle, Fortezza San Carlo & Usseaux
- for the second longest defensive wall in the world & impressive mountain fort built starting in the 1400s, by first the French & finished by the House of Savoy. Plus interesting mountain Sun-Dial village of Usseaux closeby.

Saluzzo & Castello Manta & Fossano
- Piedmont medieval & renaissance town of Saluzzo plus excellent frescos at Castello Manta, then back to hotel by way of Fossano with excellent castle & ramparts.

Abbazzia di Staffarda & Saluzzo & Pinerolo
- 1200 abbey of the Cisterians at Staffarda, excellently preserved, town of Saluzzo & town of Pinerolo.

- an extraordinary drive to an excellent alpine village that makes Raschera cheese and includes a cheese aging cave under the village, an old stone grain mill and lovely osteria that makes their pasta from flour milled next door at the mill.

Vercelli, Novara, Ghemme & Gattinara wine districts + Sacra Monte
- rice growing towns in the Po River basin, plus drive tours of the small wine districts nearby and if you are ambitious, a visit to one of the most ancient of all Holy Mounts.

Principato di Lucedio ancient Rice Estate
- in the middle of vast rice fields in this former Benedictine monastery, the first to bring & cultivate rice in Piedmont and still a working rice estate of excellent quality arborio & canaroli, complete with a contessa & risotto tasting lunch.

Biella, Best Beer in the World, ancient Waldensian village + Sacra Mont Oropa
- a day trip to the northern reaches of Piedmont to visit one of the most beautiful villages in Italy, drink the best beer in the world at Birreria Menabrea then visit the sanctuary at Oropa.

Other "Must See" Sights in and around Alba, Asti and Torino

Residences of the House of Savoy
The World Heritage Committee or UNESCO has inscribed all of the Residences of the House of Savoy as world heritage sites! There are dozens of impressive Savoia residences to see all throughout Piedmont; when Emanuele-Philibert, Duke of Savoy, moved his capital from Chambery in the Savoia in France to Turin in 1562, he began a vast series of building projects to demonstrate the power of the ruling house. Those building projects were continued by his successors and all of the buildings in the vast complex were designed and decorated by the leading architects and artists of the time. The magnificent works radiate out into the surrounding countryside, far and wide, from the Royal Palace in the “Command Area” in Turin (Torino) to include dozen of country residences and hunting lodges.


Near Torino on the southern edge of the city, 40 minute drive. This hunting lodge is a magnificent example of of the works of Juvarra, the most important architect in Northern Italy.


Towering Basilica and mausoleum of the House of Savoy.

Borgo Castello La Mandria
In Veneria on the northern edge of Torino. This stupendous hunting lodge and grounds were built by Vittorio Emmanuele II and have been undergoing renovations by the region of Piedmont to preserve the beautiful buildings, art and park with lake. This hunting lodge has some the best examples (and the most) of period furniture so it is a great destination for antique lovers.


Another of the Savoy hunting lodges, it is one of the best examples of the architect Guarini's work. It is located 25 minutes from Hotel Castello di Sinio and could make for an excellent half day excursion when combined with a stop in Bra to visit the headquarters of Slow Food.

Near Alba, Roman Ruins, House of Savoy Country Palace & Slow Food Wine Bank
The House of Savoy were the ruling family in Piedmont and Pollenzo was one their most important country castles and agricultural complexes. The main piazza is stupendous with the 13th century church on one side and the castle on the other. The church is a magnificent example of Baroque architecture and was restored during the 1600s by the House of Savoy. In the piazza are well preserved remains of Roman foundations and the original Roman built acquaduct still runs under what is now the Slow Food Wine Bank housed in a part of the restored castle. Besides the Slow Food Wine Bank the complex also houses the Slow Food University. Pollenzo is significant as it was the largest and most important Roman center during their 500 year occupation of Piedmont.

Santuario di Vicoforte
Sanctuary and Baroque Arcade build by King Carlo Albert I
A half hours drive through the beautiful and unspoiled countryside of the wine DOC called Monragelese, you will be rewarded by a wonderful pause in the small town of Vicoforte home to this Benedictine Sancutary and Church built by the House of Savoy. The church has the largest dome, larger even than Superga and merits an inside visit to see it't frescoed interior done by the leading artists of the time. Stroll through the Arcade which now houses many interesting shops, one in particular of unusual and high quality childrens clothing a great designer shoe store with discount prices and a very nice period cafe with good candy and food products to purchase.

Medieval hilltown extraordinaire!
Very near to the Santuario di Vicoforte, Modoví is the perfect stop and stroll around. It is a good place to have lunch and enjoy the vistas of the greater part of Piedmont on a clear day due to it's strategic location on a very high hill that rises straight out of the Cuneo plain. Seen from a far as you are approaching from Alba or Asti it is beautiful and panoramic, set as it is, against the Italian French Alps with Mont Viso dramatically rising behind it. It is decidedly not a tourist trap and is reknowned throughout Italy for it's particular cuisine and wine, much less well known to foreign travelers. All throughout late October and November, there is a special food festival every weekend called Peccato di Gola. Bundle up in something warm and walk through the entire town visiting artisan food and wine vendors. You will truly feel like you are in Italy here!


Art in Piedmont
In Turin and in Susa interesting traces of the Roman Age can be found. The religious Romanesque-Gothic architecture is remarkable: splendid examples are the Abbey of Vezzolano, the Sacra di San Michele, the Abbey of Staffarda, St. Antonio di Ranverso, St. Andrea in Vercelli and other churches in Saluzzo, Chieri and Ciriè. The Baroque style has greatly influenced the appearance of most Piedmontese cities, especially in Turin, capital of the Dukedom of Savoy: Palazzo Carignano, Palazzo Madama, the majestic Castle of Stupinigi, the basilica of Superga, which rises on a hill near Turin are outstanding examples.

Museums in Piedmont
In Turin, visitors should not miss a visit to the Royal Armory, one of the richest in Europe nor to the Egyptian Museum, the second most important in the world after the one in Cairo. Torino's Eygtian museum is generally regarded as having some of the most precious remains of the ancient civilization that built the Pyramids. The Sabauda Gallery houses pictorial works of the Piedmontese, Dutch and Flemish schools, as well as some valuable works of the great Tuscans, such as the Beato Angelico and the Pollaiolo. In Vercelli the Borgogna Museum, which houses the works of the local Renaissance painters; in Alessandria the Civic Museum and the Pinacoteca deserve a visit. Asti’s art-gallery houses both fifteenth-century and eighteenth-nineteenth century paintings. Cuneo's Civic Museum gives particular focus to the local history and artistic tradition including the many mountain valleys that spoke out of Cuneo and in to the Italian French Apls. In Novara an interesting Epigraphic Museum can be seen in the fifteenth-century cloister of the Cathedral.

Must See Festivals in and around Alba, Asti & Torino

Alba International Music Festival - May, June, July
In Alba as well the various villages of Le Langhe including Sinio all during the months of May,June & July as well as various other dates throughout the year. Concert schedules available at the hotel or click on

An excellent, extremely high quality Music Festival, in conjunction with St. Mary's College in the US. Venues are medieval churches, castles & outdoor amphitheaters and artists are professionals, amateurs & students whose performances are truly inspiring. There is an incredible amount of music offered, amazingly all for Free, also in many months other than May, June & July. We really encourage you to click on the link above and weave some of fantastic music available through this festival in to your vacation.

Alba National TRUFFLE FAIR - October 1 to Nov 7
Alba celebrates their precious White Truffle with a Gourmet Food Fair every weekend in Palazzo Tartufo. An incredible array of products, made with and without Truffles are presented by dozens or cheese, salumi, candy, pasta, bread,gelato and lots of other producers. There is also the Wine Pavillion and of course, the Truffle Hunter stand whose wares are presented & offered for sale by the Truffle Hunters themselves. Their truffles will be judged all week long for the highest quality, biggest & most beautiful.

This month long festival celebrates more than the Alba White Truffle. it also celebrates Alba's Roman & Medieval history and traditions with various parades, re-enactments and culminates with the Palio of the Donkeys. click on for most specific information and this years dates and events-

ASTI Palio d'Asti - September
Asti's Palio isn't quite as famous as Siena's, but almost! We are a mere half hour away since the new autostrada has been completed between Alba & Asti so visting Barolo wineries AND going to the Palio is very convenient from Castello di Sinio.

For specific dates and to purchase tickets Click on

Vinum WINE FESTIVAL in Alba - April 25 - 26 & May 1 - 3

In the historic city center of Alba, this festival celebrates the beginning of Spring and the promotion of local wine with many interesting opportunities to learn and taste, including various workshops. An excellent wine festival!! For more information on booths, partecipating wineries & workshops and to purchase tickets Click on

Barolo Wine Festival
September 9-11
Barolo's annual wine festival features a tasting of 60 Barolos at he Enoteca as well as live music, games, concerts, merchants selling typical food products at booths throughout the village, dancing, special tasting dinners at Barolo restaurants, and comedy.

Dogliani's 67th Dolcetto Festival
September 4th, 11th, 18th
Wine and typical food tastings; Enobike--a ride through nature with stops at local wine producers for tastings, harvest menus at local restaurants, guided vineyard walks, folkstories, the history of dolcetto in Dogliani, and more!

Bra From Courtyard to Courtyard
September: Bra's 10th annual City Festival
Guided festival through the courtyards of the historic city center with wine and food tastings, live music, street artists, movies, dancing, archaeological site visits, fireworks, theater productions, tasting lessons, train rides.

Slow Food CHEESE!! International Cheese Fair
September 16-19
The International Fair of cheese and dairy products in Bra, home of the Slow Food Movement and organized by them . Cheese producers from all over the world participate and offer tastings of cheese. Italy & France are particularly well represented but you will find artisan cheese producers from literally every corner of the world. It is a true celebration of great cheeses. Plenty of wine is available to accompany. Click here for specifics and tickets

La Morra "Barolo Nights" July 25 - 26 2009
The 4 best La Morra restaurants will offer special menus accompanied by a flight of up to 15 Barolos. For more information and to reserve click

Chocolate--One Week of Temptations
Cuneo's Annual Chocolate Celebration
Mid February
Cuneo is full of Chocolate in mid-February! Local cafes, pastry shops, ice cream stores, and restaurants prepare special dishes featuring Italy's renowned chocolate. Chocolate statues and sculptures adorn the town and the streets are filled with merchants, dancers, musicians, and pastry makers. Attend a workshop with a local confectioner or simply delight in the offerings of local producers.

Spring Snail Festival
May-June; September

The White Bean Festival
Lequio Berria's Annual "Lequioinpiazza"

The Aromatic Herb Frittata Festival
San Benedetto Belbo
This festival is held during the agriculture and artisans fair of the city every summer.

Festival of the Wine from the Alta Langa DOC

A wine festival celebrating the Alta Langa's DOC zone; held simultaneously with Borgomale's "Party Under the Castle"--the city's annual summer festival.

Mid-Summer City Festival

Festival of Carne All'albese (carpaccio)
Early August
This celebration is part of the zootechnical fair.

San Lorenzo Fair
Early August

The Murazzano DOP Cheese Production Festival
Late August

The Piedmont Hazelnut Festival
Early September

The Chestnut Festival
Early October

The Fair of Saint Martin
Late November
A horticultural and cultural festival celebrating vegetables.

Trekking in Langa
Over 200km of walks through vineyards and forests with beautiful landscapes, panoramas and vineyards. Trails in all cities in the Langhe!

Ski Cuneo
In the mountains of Cuneo there are several great ski resorts that offer both downhill and cross-country skiing.

Herb Market
October 5

Markets - for Food and Truffles!
Outdoor markets in Italy are still a regular way of life here. On market day everyone comes out to buy the freshest and greatest selection of seasonal produce, as well as everything else from hardware supplies to mouthwatering roasted chickens! At Hotel Castello di Sinio, We offer a detailed listing of the daily markets throughout the Langhe. Not to be missed are the Saturday morning market in Alba, the Tuesday morning market in Dogliani, and the Wednesday market in Asti. If you really want to see the truffle underground market you should go early to Dogliani on Tuesday mornings or Carru on Thursdays. If you speak a little italian you could ask one of the colorful old geezers, who seem to be loitering nonchalantly, if they have something interesting for sale. If your eye is not tuned to who is or is not a "Trifalau" or late night truffle sleuth, your nose will guide you! It really is not at all weird to slowly sashay past dapper octagenarians all the while sniffing the air heavily. The profume of Alba white truffles is intense and intoxicating and it is easy to discern from whom the heady scent is eminating!

Golfing in Piemonte
Italy, Golf & Wine DO go together! If you are an avid golfer, or aspire to be, AND love wine, you don't have to choose one or the other when you choose a vacation in Italy.

Although it is not well known, Italy - and Piedmont in particular - is an excellent place to play golf; the courses here are plentiful, beautiful and well maintained. Best of all, they are a downright bargain in comparison to similar quality courses in other places. The golf culture is alive and well, mostly due to Fiat founder, Gianni Agnelli's love of golf, and his subsequent building world class courses like I Roveri and Torino Golf Club. Both courses are within 45 minutes of our hotel.

Other fantastic courses to consider, all within a half hour of us are Cherasco Golf Club, La Margherita, Ciliege and Colline Gavi. Average green fees range from about € 35 to € 65. Can't beat it with a stick - golf that is! So bring your sticks and split your days between drinking Barolo & Barbaresco at famous wineries and playing a round of great, inexpensive golf. It's a dream come true, No? James will help you arrange your golf logistics and tee times.

Bike and Tasting Tours in the Alta Langa
Maps for bicycle paths in the Alta Langa including: barolo vineyards tour, religious landmark tours, moscato vineyard tour, cheese tour, hazelnut tour, and a stone tour.

Hiking in the Langhe and Roero
There are many well marked hikes and walks throughout the Langhe highlighting historical medieval sites, towers, castles, and especially plentiful are trails through the vineyards. For wine lovers, nothing could be more evocactive than walking through Grand Cru vineyards. This is as close to the source as it gets! You may very well be doubly rewarded by running in to the winemaker himself out pruning the vines for most of even the very famous winemakers do the work themselves of grooming these glorious and prized vineyards. Hotel Castello di Sinio has excellent walking maps of the area that include walk times and types, degree of difficulty and suggested itineraries.

Click here to search for more events and attractions in the area.

Contact Us

Hotel Castello di Sinio
Localita Castello 1
12050 Sinio (CN)
Piedmont, Italy
Telephone: 0173.263.889
Fax: 0173.263.958
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